Will new Brantford Mayor make any difference

BRANTFORD — Kevin Davis admits his triumph over incumbent mayor Chris Friel was a bitter-sweet victory. The day after election, he realized he would have to make some serious changes in his routine to serve the people of Brantford. Davis has been a lawyer and community leader for almost 40 years and has been Managing Partner, for the past six-years years, with  Waterous, Holden, Amey, Hitchon LLP. He has or will be resigning from his many positions to take on the new challenge without baggage or without the appearance of bias in any way.

He has contributed to the City and its citizens in the following roles in Brantford, including, President, Brantford Boys and Girls Club; Chairman of John Noble Home for the Aged; Chairman of the Brantford Economic Development Board; Director of the Brantford YM-YWCA Housing Corporation; City Councillor, City of Brantford; Founding member, President, Brantford Collaborative Law Group; President of the Brantford Chamber of Commerce; President of the Brantford Aquatic Club; Mohawk College Board of Governors; United Way Campaign Chair; Treasurer/Director Brant Condo Corp #62, and President Rotary Club of Brantford, Sunrise.

“The results were delayed coming in on election night,” Davis recalls. “When I knew I had won, the emotion is hard to describe. Elation, I suppose. I was like nothing I have ever experienced in my life.”

But now, all the talk was over, the campaigning done, and the next morning the enmity of the task began to become real for Davis. He has just unseated one of Brantford’s longest running mayors, Chris Friel who occupied the Mayors chair between 1994 to 2003 and was re-elected to the same position in 2010 where he has remained until last week’s results were counted. Davis not only won, but clobbered Friel at the poles with 52.93% of the vote attracting 12,867 votes compared to Friel’s 7,200 votes for 29.62%.

“Then I woke up Tuesday morning and I realized the enormity of the task touring about the change that people supported me for,” he says. “The whole weight of office began to bear down on me.”

But to go anywhere, you have to leave where you are and Davis is both elated with his new challenge with the support of so many citizens, and saddened about leaving his friends, clients, colleagues at the law firm.

The new council is officially sworn in Dec. 3rd and Davis says he is excited and be will be hitting the ground running.

How does that play out for Six Nations is yet to be determined, however, Elected Chief Ava Hill called to congratulate him following the win, but is looking forward to sitting with him and discussing Six Nations matters looking forward.

Davis and his wife have taken a brief vacation to wind down from the election and to gather his thoughts before taking the oath of office and to “reconnect” with her after taking so much time on the campaign trail.

Exactly how Six Nations and the new mayor and council will get along in the spirit of the Two Row Wampum agreement in an atmosphere of cooperation and fair dealing, is a story yet to be written, but one thing seems certain, and that is it as time for a new outlook. But there is also some trepidation from some Six Nations leaders as well, now with an experienced and veteran lawyer at the helm of the good ship Brantford. This potentiality could go either way for Six Nations when push comes to shove on land usage and land claims still active in the Canadian court system, but buried under years of dusty files. Only time will tell at this point, but at least its a fresh start.

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